Caravan – Classic Rock Legends: Caravan Review

Posted: October 4, 2011 by kingcrimsonprog in Music Reviews, Prog, Prog DVD

Caravan - Classic Rock Legends: Caravan

Caravan - Classic Rock Legends: Caravan

Caravan are one of the big names associated with the Canterbury Scene branch of the Progressive Rock genre. This Classic Rock Legends DVD sees the band reforming to play a selection tracks mostly drawn from their much loved early albums.

It was recorded on December 4th 2010 in a cramped 7×14 meter television studio in London, for an intimate feeling but televised gig in front of a small group of very lucky fans.

I was a little skeptical of how good this might be considering that it was recorded for terrestrial British Television and didn’t have my hopes up in terms of the audio visual side o things. Luckily this skepticism proved unnecessary.

The first thing that will hit you is the surprisingly high picture quality, this is a very good looking DVD. Additionally there is a lot of (restrained and tasteful) camera movement and all musicians are covered well from more than one angle, leaving an impression of professionalism and quality.

The line-up features Pye Hastings on guitars and vocals, as well as Geoff Richardson on viola (and just about everything else too, including Gardening Shears) Jim Leverton on bass, Jan Schelhas on Keyboards and the excellent new drummer Mark Walker, with original drummer Richard Coughlan back on stage for some additional percussion.

The band really deliver in terms of performance and put in a good show all around, tracks like ‘The Unauthorised Breakfast Item,’ are bursting with energy, Pye’s voice is on top form and each musician goes at their instruments like a band half their age.

Highlights include a funky rendition of ‘Memory Lane, Hugh,’ from 1973’s For Girls Who Grow Plump In The Night album and brilliant versions of ‘Golf Girl,’ and the rousing twenty minute epic ‘Nine Feet Under Ground,’ from 1971’s In The Land Of Grey And Pink.

With great sound, great picture and especially a great performance; this DVD is an absolute must have for existing Caravan fans and would make a fine introduction for prospective fans too. So if you are a fan of prog with big keyboard solos, occasional violin and flute centric moments along with lots of atmosphere and attitude then Caravan are certainly a proposition that you should check out.

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